Listen free for 30 days

Solve for Happy

Engineer Your Path to Joy
By: Mo Gawdat
Narrated by: Mo Gawdat
Length: 11 hrs and 12 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (528 ratings)

£7.99/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime

Summary

Solve for Happy is a startlingly original book about creating and maintaining happiness, written by a top Google executive with an engineer's training and fondness for thoroughly analyzing a problem.

In 2004 Mo Gawdat, a remarkable thinker whose gifts had landed him top positions in half a dozen companies and who - in his spare time - had created significant wealth, realized that he was desperately unhappy. A lifelong learner, he attacked the problem as an engineer would, examining all the provable facts and scrupulously following logic. When he was finished, he had discovered the equation for enduring happiness.

Ten years later that research saved him from despair when his college-age son, Ali - also intellectually gifted - died during routine surgery. In dealing with the loss, Mo found his mission: he would pull off the type of moonshot that he and his Google [X] colleagues were always aiming for - he would help 10 million people become happier by pouring his happiness principles into a book and spreading its message around the world.

One of Solve for Happy's key premises is that happiness is a default state. If we shape expectations to acknowledge the full range of possible events, unhappiness is on its way to being defeated. To steer clear of unhappiness traps, we must dispel the six illusions that cloud our thinking (e.g., the illusion of time, of control, and of fear); overcome the brain's seven deadly defects (e.g., the tendency to exaggerate, label, and filter); and embrace five ultimate truths (e.g., change is real, now is real, unconditional love is real).

By means of several highly original thought experiments, Mo helps listeners find enduring contentment by questioning some of the most fundamental aspects of their existence.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying photographs will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.

©2016 Mo Gawdat (P)2016 Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd.

More from the same

What members say
Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    385
  • 4 Stars
    91
  • 3 Stars
    29
  • 2 Stars
    15
  • 1 Stars
    8
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    370
  • 4 Stars
    60
  • 3 Stars
    22
  • 2 Stars
    9
  • 1 Stars
    5
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    345
  • 4 Stars
    74
  • 3 Stars
    26
  • 2 Stars
    7
  • 1 Stars
    12

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Life changing!

I was recommended this book by a client of mine and I am so grateful for the recommendation. This story is so powerful and Mo’s views on life and death have been simply life changing for me. I’ve always had an agnostic outlook but Mo’s views on whether we are just here as a chance event or by design have really resonated with me. I’ve listened to the various beliefs and religions, but nothing has struck a chord with me like this book has.

I am so grateful for Mo presenting his thoughts and beliefs in such a clear way for others to benefit. He’s had to experience a hugely challenging situation and to turn that whole situation into something for the huge benefit of others is just amazing.

Thank you for this book Mo.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Excellent...up until the last chapter

Is there anything you would change about this book?

Delete the chapter on God. When I first started listening to this book I thought it was fascinating, insightful and endearing. Mo's story and his logical approach to finding the solution to his happiness was convincing and I was totally sold...Until I read his chapter on God. Out of the window went the logic, reason and insight and in came a set of arguments that were so misinformed it made me angry. it was like I was listening to an audio tour at a creation museum.I was so disappointed that someone who's ideas and arguments seemed so intelligent and persuading throughout the rest of the book resorted to the weak and uninformed arguments of a young earth believer.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

His approach to thinking about what really matters was inspiring, his opinions on a higher power were not.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

yes, the narration and passion was felt throughout.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

No

38 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

fantastic narrative of a complex subject made easy

Loved it!! I foresee this becoming as renowned as "the power of now" but much easier to listen to and understand. fantastic metaphysical book told through a very personal story and logic.

20 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Recommended to everyone

I rarely write reviews, but this book is fantastic.
Mo has a quirky narrators accent, which at first seems a little strange compared to the professionally narrated audiobooks. However, as you get used to it, you realise that this adds so much to the book. It’s a personal story of tough life experience that has brought tears to the eyes of the toughest of my friends. Mo has a real scientific brain and methodically creates and solves the happy equation. It’s an absolute joy to listen to and a down to earth, antidote to the rah rah, grind harder, go crush it rhetoric of many self development books. Listen to this book now. You will not regret it.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

One to reread as so much contnet to process

I have read many "self development" and business books over the years, this one would be in my top 5 books to read. The content is powerful and written in a way that is engaging, amusing and honest. I kept reading and going..yea that's how I am!
It does get a bit ither worldly in parts but just stick with it and enjoy the story as much as the content.
I found it very personal and really enjoyed Mo reading it.
Inspiring and have recommended to many people since reading it.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Little bit disappointed..

This book has some interesting concepts in it. I enjoyed listening to the author and I respect that he has found an equation that works for him. However for me there were too many places in this book that contradict. I would forgive these contradictions if the book didn't start from a science and maths approach and then try to prove god and afterlife by an initial distortion of a scientific theory and then layering on maths to develop the distortion. For instance the book’s “many random events that created the universe” against “an intelligent designer”. I'd don't think anyone would view evolution or the universe as random, there are forces/rules/laws guiding it...just not an “intelligently” aware being... I understand why he has built this mental model to help him be happy and some of what he wrote will help me be happier. I am grateful having listened to the book and thank him for writing it. However, the solution he came to for dealing with afterlife won’t work for me and I’ll keep on searching.

18 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

A very disappointing, if predictable end...

I picked up some great tips from this book, don't get me wrong. However, given the title, I expected a little more from the author's main point than "There is life after death".

I can't help but think that all the arguments and strategies that came before are undermined after he reveals that actually, the only idea that really helped was the belief in an afterlife.

There were hints of this throughout. Namely, when talking about the sense of self and who you are, he goes into a lot of effort to say that there is more to you than your thoughts, body, and desires. Rather than completing his train of thought and simply saying there is no such thing as the "self", he just says you are the "observer". Great. Well done, you've replaced one word with another, worse analogy for a soul.

This is just one example of the ideas in this book not being followed through because of an underlying restrictive belief system. I was actually becoming quite angry at some points because of fallacious logic or incomplete discussions.

There is a whole chapter dedicated to god, in which he outlines the good-old appeal from randomness argument. He goes to a huge amount of words/effort to state that the universe is complex and therefore there is a god (and therefore, inexplicably, an afterlife).
I just wanted to shout at him: complexity is NOT randomness! His arguments are deliberately misleading and harmful.

Basically, I learned a lot about my beliefs after reading this book, mainly in opposition to his.

The take-home points from this book, which I have taken to heart, are essentially:
1. You are not *just* your thoughts
2. Distract yourself with happier thoughts
3. Happiness is the default state, not something to *acquire*
4. Be present in the present

These four points are good enough. Save yourself 11 hours, stick with those 4 points.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

One Of The Best - No, Actually THE Best

Where does Solve for Happy rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This will become a classic. It's easy to listen to, intelligent, fresh, and most of all very personal and touching. I will listen to this over and over, as there is so much in it.

What did you like best about this story?

The intelligence, the new perspectives and the enlightenment flowing from it. I've read literally hundreds of this type of book. From now on, this is the only one I'll recommend to others.

Which character – as performed by Mo Gawdat – was your favourite?

na

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Lots of moving moments, but the mathematical analysis of randomness in evolution was (for me) something that changed everything for me.

Any additional comments?

Thanks, Mo, for putting this into words. It was an honour to hear it in your own voice.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great book

Really enjoyed this book and so will you! Easy to easy understand and follow along.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Solve for Happy review

Reading this book was an absolute joy. It is a practical guide and meta analysis of happiness literature to date. First time I read it it gave me hope, the second time put life long bad habits to rest

2 people found this helpful

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for JulietC
  • JulietC
  • 14-10-17

Life-changing and moving

Too much foto a single listening, need to listen ti it again to fully appreciate.
In the meantime, a heartfelt huge thank you to the author for sharing his research on happyness so clearly and sincerely. A big hug and thank you again. Awesome job

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Niel
  • Niel
  • 26-07-17

1 of the Top 3 best books i have listened to

I enjoyed the authors voice , a very calming authentic human voice , the book offers both insight into practical steps to take to be happy , i especially enjoyed listening to the parts about his son Ali , it sounds like Ali was such a wonderful young man that understand alot more about humanity as well , really good to see and feel how much love existed between Mo and his son Ali , wonderful book have already recommended to so many people - goes beyond the normal western approaches and i could relate to . Thank you Mo Gawdat .

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for William Kristjánsson
  • William Kristjánsson
  • 13-07-17

Mo Gawdat solved my happiness equation

Mo inspired me with his sincere and honest stories. I owe him everything. Thank you.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Susan Elisabeth Hursey
  • Susan Elisabeth Hursey
  • 17-05-20

The best book about happiness ever

This man does not claim to be a guru. His ideas are there to be challenged and explored, but I loved his delivery, his voice is delightful and his ideas made me think. It was a wonderful listen.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Yehuda Einav
  • Yehuda Einav
  • 12-02-19

Just amazing

There's no way for me to describe how this book showed me life and love.
Thank you mo I wish I could meet you and thank you.
And for you to meet Ali. All of my love to you.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Luz Helena
  • Luz Helena
  • 28-11-18

Emotional and rational at the same time.

I loved this book. Mo was such a familiar voice. Poignant and thought provoking. Highly recommended.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Joep Gerrits
  • Joep Gerrits
  • 25-11-18

Great story, audio quality disappoints

I started this book in paperback but switched to Audio because I noticed that I couldn’t get myself to sit down and read.

I love the story but I notice that it’s almost impossible to hear him well if you’re on the road..

@Audible, is there be any chance that the overall audio level is increased on this book?

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Roland Wamara
  • Roland Wamara
  • 04-08-18

Great book!

The book provides an understanding of life principles and happiness in ways that most books cannot convey. The engineering approach to happiness mixed with an emotional story of who and what inspired the author makes this book one that anyone can relate to. I would recommend this to anyone. Thanks Mo!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Anirudh Maitra
  • Anirudh Maitra
  • 14-05-18

A life changing book. I would recommend it highly.

It really teaches you the meaning of life and how to be happy in the face of adversity and challenge. must read..

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Teh Yicai
  • Teh Yicai
  • 20-02-18

i looked for a far superior version of myself,

and the book he would write.. thf hvdf dhbc eyvv xbhd dgvc eyv sgjv ghj